Friday, September 23, 2011

Technology, School, & Me!

Everyday I walk into my classroom, I feel I do a great job of integrating technology into my daily curriculum.  As a technology teacher, it is my job and my passion.  Walking through my school, it is awesome to see many teachers developing lesson plans and digital age learning experiences.  Booking our computer lab or mobile laptop carts is becoming more difficult with each passing week as school progresses. 

Students in 8th Grade are able to plan and present "Virtual Vacations" to historic places and events they discuss in Social Studies Class, they create video dictionaries about the meanings of standardized test vocabulary, they virtually explore famous Civil War battles online, and create podcasts about school events and monthly updates around our school.  Students in 7th Grade get to create one minute video book reviews about their favorite or least favorite books , record audio interviews with famous authors and historic figures, and create graphic digital art as a connection to Art Class. Our sixth graders create collaborative presentations online within Google Docs, write and record school related rap songs within small groups, create Anti Bullying/Cyberbullying Comic Books online, and Internet Safety Awareness Glogs on GlogsterEDU.  These are only a small sample of the examples you would find in my school of teachers creating digital age work, online responsibility, and inspiring digital creativity and design. 

The major barriers or "divides" you would find in my school related to the use of technology would come more with inexperience than accessibility.  Although booking the labs can take some patience, many teachers are not familiar with how to creatively and effectively integrate technology into their curriculum.  This is an exciting challenge for me to find more ways to engage professional growth and leadership within my school to help my colleagues find more create ways to teach our 21st Century Learners. 

I am not fearful of integrating and using technology at all.  As a 6th Grade Computer and Technology Instructor, I have embraced technology as one of the most important and effective educational tools in the classroom.  My only fears come from when my technology does not work or function as it should.  Every time technology lets me down, I have to be adaptive and patient with my alternative activities.  I have become so dependent on technology that just the Internet being down at my school can keep kids from reading our agendas on my website or using an online resource.  I do not fear using technology or teaching others to use it.  I fear when technology does not work for me as it should.  

My personal goals as I journey forward are built around finding more creative ways to effectively integrate technology into my 6th Grade Curriculum.  I will create more genuine learning experiences and teaching moments "that stick."  I  will continue to work harder to exhibit leadership in sharing technology integration strategies and promoting growth among my colleagues. 


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